Being stressed is lonely! No one understands – or it seems no one does. Those closest to you may be a cause of your stress (eg, due to serious illness or if there has been a quarrel). You need somewhere where you can relax and be refreshed. This may be a physical place to go to, or even a place in your memory you associate with peace and tranquillity – and you feel relaxed even when thinking about being there.
Many find gentle repetitive exercise engenders a sense of calm. This might be walking, jogging or gardening. But note, this exercise is not about getting fit. For that you need to work harder and concentrate. This is about relaxing – taking exercise that does not make you sweat, take your breath away or mean you have to mentally concentrate on what you are doing.
If you listen to music while you exercise keep it gentle and in the background so it helps both your mind and body to relax.
Once you do this regularly, you will do it without thinking so your mind is free to wander, meditate and reflect. You will find as you become emotionally calmer and relaxed, your mind will work automatically and you may come up with ideas and even solutions for your worries and problems. Some find a repetitive activity like knitting or colouring has a similar relaxing effect.
It is also helpful to cultivate a spiritual oasis so in the loneliness of stress, you can still sense that God is with you. A wise man from 3,000 years ago said,
‘Leave your troubles with the Lord and he will defend you; he never lets honest people be defeated.’
God wants to be an oasis of peace and calmness even in the middle of all our troubles. God is there for everyone.
Here is another prayer for you:
You know how confused and stressed I get with so many thoughts tumbling around in my head. Please help me to find in you an Oasis of Calm.
In Jesus name.
We all need Oases of Calm. Where are yours? Do you use them? Can you develop them? Use the Response Button to write about your Oases.